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Technology Sony’s 360 Reality Audio launches this fall with 1,000 tracks

23:00  15 october  2019
23:00  15 october  2019 Source:   engadget.com

Sony’s headphone app will soon analyze your ears for 360 audio

Sony’s headphone app will soon analyze your ears for 360 audio Back at CES, Sony unveiled 360 Reality Audio, a new standard/format/ecosystem for immersive sound on headphones and speakers. The headphone demo at CES was very technical and quite sensitive as calibrating sound profiles to your ears required a thin wire underneath some studio-grade cans. The company was clear in January that the goal would be for anyone to do the calibration with their phone, by taking a picture of their ears. At IFA, Sony is showing off how that feature will work inside its current Headphones app. The Sony Headphones app is already the place you adjust noise cancellation, tweak the EQ and make other changes to its line of audio gear.

Sony isn't letting Dolby corner the market on positional audio. Today, the electronics giant announced that 360 Reality Audio, its high resolution immersive listening technology that debuted at CES, is officially launching this fall. There will be around 1,000 tracks to start from the likes of Billy Joel and Bob Dylan. You'll be able to access 360 Reality songs via Tidal, Amazon Music HD, Deezer and nugs.net (which is a real service, we checked) on their respective iOS and Android apps.

a black and red shoes

Sony is basically trying to recreate the experience of listening to live music with 360 Reality Audio. Think of it like a step beyond stereo, you'd ideally be able to pick out where an instrument is being played on a sound field that completely surrounds you. We were impressed by the technology at CES, but had our reservations about Sony's ability to deliver on an entirely new audio format (especially since high resolution has been languishing for years).

Sony's immersive 360 Reality Audio is coming to Amazon Music

  Sony's immersive 360 Reality Audio is coming to Amazon Music Amazon's newest addition to its smart speaker lineup, the Echo Studio, doesn't only offer higher quality audio than its brethren. It also supports new audio technologies like Dolby Atmos and Sony's 360 Reality Audio for an immersive listening experience. To coincide with the launch of the speaker, Sony has announced that 360 Reality Audio content will soon be available to stream through Amazon Music HD. The 360 Reality Audio format uses "object-based spatial audio technology" which maps out different types of sounds such as vocals or instruments with positional information.

Even though Sony is going through the motions of officially launching 360 Reality Audio, it's still far from a sure bet. The initial lineup of around 1,000 songs seems laughably low, though the company says more are coming from Sony's music label (naturally), Warner and Universal. Sony also teamed up with LiveNation to deliver 100 concert recordings from the likes of CHARLI XCX and Kodaline.

  Sony’s 360 Reality Audio launches this fall with 1,000 tracks © Provided by Oath Inc.

Sony's 360 speaker prototype.

Billy Steele/Engadget

Sony says you'll be able to listen to 360 Reality Audio tracks any headphones and the participating streaming apps on Android and iOS. You'll also get a customized experience with Sony's headphones, as its mobile app will be able to tune itself to your ears. You just have to take a picture of your ears, and Sony's cloud-based algorithms will send you a unique hearing pathway in under a minute. As for speakers, you'll need a system with multiple units and Sony's custom decoder.

Curiously, the company also partnered with Amazon and Google to deliver 360 Reality content on the Echo Studio and Chromecast. That makes sense, but it makes me wonder how those experiences will differ from the more complex speaker setup Sony demands.

Developing...

Apple TV app is available on some Sony smart TVs .
When the redesigned Apple TV app arrived in May, it was compatible with Samsung smart TVs, as well as the expected Apple products. Apple promised that the app would eventually work on more platforms, and in the past weeks, it's arrived on Roku and Amazon's Fire TV Stick devices. Now, 9to5Mac reports that the Apple TV app is available on some Sony smart TVs. Because Sony uses Android TV, this marks another instance of Apple blending its tech with the Android platform. The added feature is available through a firmware update, which is being rolled out to newer TVs. Sony hasn't said which models will receive the update.

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